Making Faces by Amy Harmon


An amazing story of love, loss, and growth of small town heroes, misfits, and idealists. I can’t say enough about this story. I cried, ached, and rejoiced along with these characters.

Ambrose and Fern are the main character but in truth I feel they have equal billing to all. The cast as a collective makes Making Faces a success.

Ambrose- the town sports hero. Mr. Popular and all around good guy broke my heart early on. His issues with his mother and step dad along with his desire to make this world better makes him one of my favorite young MC’s.

Fern - Preachers daughter, quirky nerd, and faithful friend. Her love is unwavering and consistent. She is strong in her character but doesn’t know her own beauty. Fern has loved Ambrose since she was eight and has never stopped.

This is a hard review to write because I hate to give anything away. I will say that with my strong connection to the military I was a bawling mess in parts of this book. As a mother I was heartbroken and in other parts I was just shocked. At one point I had to put it down and just breathe.

Faith plays a role in Making Faces but it is not an in your face type of faith based book. Not at all.  Don’t get me wrong this is not a Christian romance by any means. But, I do understand that some can find it unpleasing so I wanted to put it out there.

Making Faces is a look from all sides and one of my Must Reads for 2013. Not sure if it is classified as YA or NA. It is also a “fade to black” read as well. So if you are looking for steamy romances keep on moving. Making Faces is more than that. It’s a coming of age story about smart kids with good parents and a strong community.

I just can't find strong enough words to describe how much I loved this book... there aren't enough stars to give this one the credit it deserves. Beautifully written with wonderful characters that touched my soul and taught me a few new life lessons. Even though I borrowed this book I will definitely be buying my own copy. There were so many beautiful quotes and conversations between these characters that caused me to stop and take pause. There were plenty of tears too... have a hankie ready!
From the very first chapters when I was abruptly reminded of the pain and shock I felt on 9/11... my emotions were at full attention. And, this author captivated my emotions until the very end. My heart immediately went out to this group of seniors who were just about to start a journey into a new phase of life but had it abruptly and harshly altered by the events of that day. Life would never be the same... especially for Ambrose... it changed his purpose. He joins the Army, his friends follow... lives are altered. The Ambrose that returns is not the same and his journey towards healing is a challenge.
Bailey... Fern... Ambrose and Rita... all of these characters are touched by ugliness, heartbreak and pain in different ways. This book is mostly about their journey to finding the beauty within them and in those around them. It's a book about loss, acceptance, love and never ever taking anything or anyone for granted. It's about learning to open your mind and allowing yourself to see people for who they really are and looking beyond their outer packaging. Whether we are beautiful, mediocre or ugly... we all want to be loved for who we are on the inside.
If you like books that leave you inspired and gives you an opportunity to break out the kleenex... this is a winner. Out of the 140 or so books I've read this year this one has easily soared to the top. My favorite book that I've read this year... I just finished and I'm ready to go back and start again. And, that is something I rarely do...  

5 Glowing Stars*****


Ambrose Young was beautiful. He was tall and muscular, with hair that touched his shoulders and eyes that burned right through you. The kind of beautiful that graced the covers of romance novels, and Fern Taylor would know. She'd been reading them since she was thirteen. But maybe because he was so beautiful he was never someone Fern thought she could have...until he wasn't beautiful anymore.

Making Faces is the story of a small town where five young men go off to war, and only one comes back. It is the story of loss. Collective loss, individual loss, loss of beauty, loss of life, loss of identity. It is the tale of one girl's love for a broken boy, and a wounded warrior's love for an unremarkable girl. This is a story of friendship that overcomes heartache, heroism that defies the common definitions, and a modern tale of Beauty and the Beast, where we discover that there is a little beauty and a little beast in all of us.

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